11/18/2010

The air transport of a county's government

The Swiss Federal Councillors now get a better deal on their aircraft trips. Could they do even better?


It was announced on 17 November that the Federal Administration would no longer pay more than the general public for the use of their private jet or Super Puma helicopter. They, like us, will now be charged only 8600 CHF per hour for the jet and 10900 CHF per hour for the helicopter.

I am not sure how this cost compares to their trips by normal commercial aviation. I have heard it said that they, plus their family, can travel free on Swiss commercial flights, perhaps even after they cease to be Federal Councillors, but I have no confirmation of this statement.

By a curious coincidence, on that same day the ARAG aircraft recognition system noted the visit of a Super Puma helicopter, with registration D-HEGL, which belpngs to the German Bundespolizei. One might wonder how much its passengers were paying, and even if the Germans could offer a better deal to our Federal councillors wanting a helicopter ride.

By another coincidence, on the same day the US Air Force sent one of their giant C-17A Globemaster transport aircraft: registration number 08-8190 and using the US Military callsign RCH743. I don't know what is the noise classification of this huge jet aircraft, because it does not appear on the standard OFAC list, but I doubt that it will be in the least noisy class! However, maybe it will be excused any noise charge anyway.

Why this US aircraft? I have no real idea, so I just make a tongue-in-cheek suggestion that since, when President Obama travels by air, he is accompanied by an airborne flotilla including similar transport aircraft, maybe the Federal Council might want to see how much of their office they could take with them on their official travels if they had such an aircraft.

Not for only 8600 CHF per hour, though!

10:33 Posted in Unusual aircraft | Permalink | Comments (0) | Tags: geneva, airport, puma, helicopter, globemaster | |  del.icio.us | | Digg! Digg |  Facebook

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